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High expectations

Sports fraternity applaud Chakwera, Chilima

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MEMORABLE—Mwawi (left) and Chakwera

Well-known sport figures joined the rest of the country in congratulating newly-elected President Lazarus Chakwera and his Vice President Saulos Klaus Chilima.

Chakwera of Malawi Congress Party together with Chilima of the UTM were sworn in Sunday at Malawi Square in Lilongwe.

The sports fraternity expressed hope that the two will transform the landscape of sports in the country.

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Several sports individuals and organisations including Football Association of Malawi (Fam), Hockey Association of Malawi, Netball Association of Malawi, Be Forward Wanderers, Nyasa Big Bullets and Sports Writers Association of Malawi sent congratulatory messages to Chakwera and Chilima.

South Africa based Malawian boxer, Isaac ‘Golden Boy’ Chilemba, said he never saw it coming.

“Firstly, I’m surprised. I never saw it coming. Never in my wildest dream did I thought the government would be changing. I just want to congratulate Chakwera for the achievement. Change is good and I pray the new leadership to bring a great change to the nation,” he said.

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Chilemba said the two have some sports background and can improve sports in the country.

“The only thing needed is them to practice what they have been preaching,” he said.

Nyasa Big Bullets legend Fischer Kondowe said the two are visionary.

“This is perhaps change which most people were waiting for. It is my prayer that they should not be surrounded with greedy people. We want to see them transforming sports. For instance in football I believe things can change if we can attract a lot of sponsors. I am sure the two have sports background and they will change things,” said the former Flames and Black Leopards winger.

Another former Flames player, Joseph Kamwendo, shared similar statements saying sports will benefit from the pair because they know the situation on the ground.

“This perhaps is a dream team to the nation. They are so passionate about sports. We know Chilima was instrumental in the government following reforms so with that in mind the Vice President will complement the President in reviving sports,” said the Be Forward Wanderers legend.

Australia based Malawi national netball team player, Mwawi Kumwenda, was not left out as she also extended her congratulatory message.

“I would like to extend my heartfelt congratulations to His Excellency Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera, and to His Excellency Dr Saulos Klaus Chilima, for being elected as President and Vice President of the Republic of Malawi respectively. I wish them nothing but utmost success as they discharge these new roles for the betterment of the people of Malawi. I pray that their leadership be founded upon integrity whilst they work selflessly to uplift the welfare of all people in Malawi, and without leaving behind those most marginalized such as the poor, people with disabilities, women and children. I also hope that the new government will make sustainable investments to enhance the netball sport in Malawi and beyond,” wrote the Melbourne Vixens shooter on her facebook page.

Former Silver Strikers secretary, Lawrence Yobe, backed the pair to change sports.

“First and foremost is to ensure that the current Sports Council strategic plan is fully funded to ensure smooth operations of the association. Then reconsider the tax break for those institutions financing various sports disciplines clubs or sports competitions. Furthermore, there is need to review the sports policy so that outstanding athletes are provided with academic scholarships in our public universities and employment in government and parastatal organisations with defined carrier progression and promotions based on their performance on the pitch,” he said.

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